The Plan

I  Intent and Purpose of this Plan

II  National, State, and Local EAS Participation and Priorities
A. Conditions of EAS Participation
B. EAS Message Priority
C. National EAS Participation
D. State/Local EAS Participation

III  Colorado State EAS Participants
A. Broadcast and Cable System Participation
B. Other Participants
C. Primary and Secondary Delivery Plan
D. Your Part in Completing the System
E. Cable Television Franchise Authorities

IV  EAS Header Code Information
A. EAS Header Code Analysis
B. Colorado Originator Codes
C. Colorado Event Codes
1. Approved FCC Event Codes
2. Additional Colorado Codes Pending FCC Approval
D. Colorado County-Location Codes
E. Colorado “L-Code” Formats

V  EAS Tests
A. Required Weekly Test (RWT)
1. Transmission
2. Time-Duration and County-Location Codes to Use
3. Reception
4. Script Format
B. Monthly Tests
C. Required Monthly Test (RMT)
1. Transmission
2. Time-Duration and County-Location Codes to Use
3. Scheduling of RMT’s: Week and Time of Day
4. Scheduling of RMT’s: Recommended Time Constraints
5. Reception/Re-transmission
6. Script Format
D. Quarterly Statewide RMT Tests
1. Script format for statewide EAS RMT

VI  EAS Real Alert Activations
A. Guidance for Alert Originators
1. National Weather Service Personnel
2. Emergency Services Personnel
3. Pueblo Chemical Depot and Rocky Flats Personnel
4. Amber Alert Program
B. Scripts and Formats for Real Alerts
1. State Activation
2. Local Activation

VII  Programming of EAS Decoders for Use in Colorado
A. Modes of Operation
B. County-Location Codes
C. Required Event Codes
D. Suggested Programming Sequence for Setting Up your EAS Decoder

Appendix A: Table of Broadcast Monitoring Assignments for Thirteen Local EAS Areas
Appendix B: Boundary Map of Colorado’s Thirteen Local EAS Areas
Appendix C: NOAA Weather Radio Stations and Coverage
Appendix D: The Colorado State Emergency Communications Committee(SECC) and Local Emergency Communications Committee(LECC)
Appendix E: Authorizing Officials for Emergency Alert System
Appendix F: Glossary of Terms and Acronyms
Appendix G: Yearly RMT Schedules
Appendix H: Table of Cable System Monitoring Assignments by Thirteen Local EAS Areas

I  Intent, Purpose, and Administration of this Plan

This Plan is the FCC-mandated document outlining the organization and implementation of the State of Colorado Emergency Alert System (EAS). It is the guideline for Colorado broadcasters and cable TV operators to determine: their mandated and optional monitoring assignments, codes to be used in the EAS Header sequence in this state, schedule of the Required Monthly Tests (RMT’s), which must be relayed by all broadcasters and cable operators within 15 minutes of reception, and any other elements of the EAS which are unique to this state. This Plan is an adjunct to the FCC EAS Rules, and is not meant to be a summary, in whole or in part, of those Rules. Consult FCC Rules Part 11 for general rules regarding the Emergency Alert System.

The responsibility of administrating this Plan rests with the members of the Colorado SECC. The SECC Chair and Vice Chair are approved by the FCC. SECC members include the Chairs and Vice-Chairs of the Local Area Emergency Communications Committees (LECC’s) and other voluntary members appointed by the SECC Chair. LECC Chair and Vice-Chair are appointed by the SECC. Committee members are appointed on a voluntary basis by the LECC Chair. The LECC’s are also subcommittees of the SECC. (See Appendix D for the list of SECC members.)

AUTHORITY STATEMENT

All mandated participants in the Emergency Alert System must have the capability to conduct activations and tests. All voluntary participants may have the capability to conduct activations and tests. Activations and tests may only be done by designated officials in accordance with the local and state plan. Typically, the designated official will be broadcasters, cablecasters, emergency management offices and public safety officials representing their jurisdictional authority, and the national weather service. The priority for activations and tests are first-national level messages, second-local area messages, third-state messages, and fourth-National Information Center (NIC) messages.

47 CFR Part 11 EAS Rules
47 CFR Part 73 Broadcast Service Rules
47 CFR Part 76 Cable Television Service Rules
FEMA Civil Preparedness Guide 1-40, 1-41

II  National, State, and Local EAS Alerts: Participation and Priorities

A. Conditions of EAS Participation

Acceptance of/or participation in this Plan shall not be deemed as a relinquishment of program control, and shall not be deemed to prohibit a broadcast licensee from exercising his independent discretion and responsibility in any given situation. Broadcast stations and cable systems originating EAS emergency communications shall be deemed to have conferred rebroadcast authority. The concept of management of each broadcast station and cable system to exercise discretion regarding the broadcast of emergency information and instructions to the general public is provided by the FCC Rules and Regulations.

B. EAS Priorities

Stations/cable operators are reminded that the EAS Priorities as set forth in the FCC Rules are as follows:
1. National EAS Messages
2. Local Area EAS Messages
3. State EAS Messages
4. Messages from the National Information Center (NIC)
[These are follow-up messages after a National EAS Activation.]

C. National EAS Participation

All broadcasters and cable operators are required to participate in the National-level EAS. “PN” (Participating National) stations and all cable operators would carry the Presidential message, “NN” (Non-Participating National) stations would follow the transmission procedures and make the sign-off announcement in the EAS Operating Handbook’s National Level Instructions section for NN stations. In addition, all broadcasters and cable operators must transmit a Required Weekly Test (RWT), and once a month, must re-transmit the Required Monthly Test (RMT) within 15 minutes of receiving it on their EAS Decoder. These actions are required of all broadcasters and cable operators, regardless of their “PN” or “NN” EAS status.

D. State/Local EAS Participation

Participation in the State and/or Local Area EAS is voluntary for all broadcasters and cable operators. However, any stations/cable operators electing to participate in the State and/or Local Area EAS must then follow the procedures found in this Plan. Note: Even though they elect not to carry National EAS Alerts, stations designated “NN” (Non-Participating National) may participate in the State and/or Local Area EAS without any prior FCC approval.

III  Colorado State EAS Participants

A. Broadcast/Cable Systems Participation

These are the FCC’s EAS station designations, reflecting the EAS status of every broadcaster. Cable operator EAS designations cannot be determined at this time as the Commission’s rules for cable systems are not yet announced. Consult the attached Appendix A, “Table of Monitoring Assignments by Local Area” in this Plan to determine your EAS designation.

NP (National Primary): Sole source of all national EAS alerts. These stations will be monitored by Colorado LP stations if possible.

LP-1 (Local Primary): The local broadcast station in your area which was previously the EBS CPCS-1 station. In some large areas where the LP-1 does not have complete coverage, a new LP-2 station has been designated to cover the far reaches of that local area. Information in this Plan relating to LP-1’s also applies to LP-2’s in those local areas. LP-1 and LP-2 stations are primarily sources of Local Area Emergency EAS messages. They will also be relaying national, state, and weather EAS alerts.

PN (Participating National): Most broadcasters and cable operators are designated as “PN”. These sources are for delivering all levels of EAS to the general public.

NN (Non-Participating National): Broadcasters who hold an “NN authorization” from the FCC sign-off the air during a National Emergency. The “NN authorization” must be obtained from the FCC’s EAS office. To remove the “NN authorization”, you must E-mail, fax, or telephone the FCC’s EAS office in Washington, DC.

B. Other Participants

The following terms are used in the organization of the Colorado EAS Plan.

State: Colorado State Emergency Operation Center in Golden, Colorado or Colorado State Patrol Dispatch in Lakewood, Colorado. Origination point of messages from the Governor.

Public Safety/911-Center: It is recommended that at least one Public Safety/911-Center in each local area will have an EAS encoder to send local alerts via the local Public Safety two-way radio or telephone line to the local area LP-1 station, and to all other broadcasters and cable operators that want to receive it directly.

NOAA (NOAA weather radio): Under the EAS, NOAA weather radio stations are encoding all of their alerts using the same coding as used for EAS alerts. Broadcasters and cable operators can feed their EAS decoders with the audio from any normal NOAA weather radio receiver, and their EAS decoder will react just as it does with broadcaster EAS codes. It is recommended, but not required, that all broadcast stations and all participating cable operators monitor the relevant NOAA weather channel in their local area.

Pueblo Chemical Depot / Rocky Flats: As part of the EAS, Pueblo Chemical Depot and Rocky Flats sites are encouraged to obtain their own EAS encoder for broadcasting on a two-way radio channel or via telephone line to a designated entry point for EAS activation. In this way they can warn area emergency managers directly of any potentially hazardous condition. Emergency services agencies which monitor this channel with an EAS decoder can be warned immediately and relay the message to every area broadcaster and cable operator. Further, if the emergency services EAS decoder monitors area broadcasters and cable operators, it will confirm when those sources pass on the emergency message.

C. Primary and Secondary Delivery Plan

The task of this Plan was to determine a primary and secondary delivery method for each level of EAS alert. For stations/operators electing to monitor only the two assigned sources, two paths for each alert are provided. Stations/operators adding optional sources will have additional paths on some alerts. Consult Appendix A of this Plan entitled, “Table of Monitoring Assignments by Local Area”, to determine the specific two mandated (broadcast) and optional sources (NOAA weather radio, local area EOC’s, cable systems, etc.) that each broadcaster and cable operator should monitor.

D. Your Part in Completing the System

The Colorado SECC sees the EAS as growing and evolving once the system is in place, especially at the local level. EAS will involve broadcasters, cable operators, SMATV, MMDS operators, Public Safety/911-Centers, and emergency operations centers. Per Federal Communications Commission Rules and Regulations, broadcasters and cable systems (pending new FCC Rules) are required to participate in the Emergency Alert System. The participation of other entities is not required, however their participation is encouraged. If they participate, they must adhere to the applicable guidelines in this plan. The basic EAS entry point for emergency agencies (i.e., the one EAS encoder in each local area at a Public Safety/911-Center sending EAS codes to the local area LP-1 station) is only a starting point. It is an initial way for all applicable government agencies to have access into the system. Indeed, some local areas and large cities have already developed and continue to evolve and update more sophisticated local EAS plans, which are a part of this State Plan. In many cases, the Public Safety/911-Center will purchase their own EAS encoder to alert local broadcasters and cable operators via their Public Safety/911-Center two-way radio or telephone lines. This is the ultimate goal for all of our Colorado counties. Standing in the way at the present time is the $2000 price of an EAS encoder. As less-expensive encoders become available, and/or communities raise the money to buy an encoder, we see more and more local county officials signaling their local broadcasters and cable operators directly, eliminating the long trip through the Public Safety/911-Center and the local area LP-1 station.

In reality, this is the way the EAS “web architecture” was envisioned to work when the concept was proposed. When we reach this point, perhaps the LP-1 stations can then be relegated to a purely back-up role. To this end, local stations are encouraged to foster a relationship with their local Public Safety/911-Center and other local area officials, and to work on funding a Public Safety/911-Center EAS encoder. This will complete the final, and perhaps most important spoke in the EAS wheel, since most EAS alerts are generated at the local level.

When this final link is completed, a local area EAS plan should be written to detail the procedures to be followed. It can be modeled after this State Plan, and include references to it. Scripts to use at the local area level may be found in the “EAS Tests” Section V of this Plan. Your local area Plan should then be submitted to your local chair for inclusion in the State EAS Plan.

E. Cable Television Franchise Authorities

The State Emergency Communications Committee recognizes that many local cable television franchise authorities have agreements in place with local cable television companies to provide audio over-rides or similar emergency alerting capabilities in addition to those required by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This Plan in no way prohibits any such agreements.

Local cable television franchise authorities are encouraged to utilize the Emergency Alert System to disseminate emergency notifications by contacting their local emergency management office and requesting activation of the Emergency Alert System. By routing the emergency information through the local emergency management office, the maximum number of people, both cable and non-cable television viewers can be notified in the shortest possible time. Routing all emergency notifications through the emergency management office will also eliminate the potential for the local cable television franchise authorities’ message being over-ridden by an Emergency Alert System message.

IV  EAS Header Code Information

A. EAS Header Code Analysis

An EAS Header Code contains the following elements, sent in the following sequence:
[Preamble] ZCZC-ORG-EEE-PSSCCC+TTTT-JJJHHMM-LLLLLLLL-
Attention Signal
Aural, Visual, or Text Message
[Preamble] NNNN
[Preamble] = (Clears the system) – Sent automatically by your encoder.
ZCZC: (Start of ASCII Code) – Sent automatically by your encoder.
ORG: (Originator Code) – Preset once by user, then sent automatically by your encoder. See following Section (B.) for code you must use.
EEE: (Event Code) – Determined by user, each time an alert is sent. See following Section (C.) for the only codes to be used in Colorado.
PSSCCC: (County-Location Code) – Determined by user, each time an alert is sent. See following Section (D.) for the assigned codes of all Colorado counties.
TTTT: (Duration of Alert) – Determined by user, each time an alert is sent.
JJJHHMM: (Date/Time-of-Day) – Sent automatically by your encoder.
LLLLLLLL: (8-Character ID, Identifying the Broadcaster, Cable TV, Weather Service Office, Rocky Flats, Pueblo Chemical Depot site, or Civil Authority operating that encoder.) Preset once by user, then sent automatically by your Encoder. See following Section (E.) for format to be followed by all users in constructing their “L-Code”.
Attention Signal: (The familiar old two tones) – Must be sent if aural, visual, or text message is sent.

[Preamble]: (Re-clears the system) – Sent automatically by your encoder when you initiate the end-of-message sequence.
NNNN: (End-of-Message Code) – Must be initiated automatically or manually at the end of every EAS alert originated by all sources. A failure of the system will occur if this code is not sent to reset the decoders of all stations/operators that carried that alert.

B. Colorado Originator Codes

Following are the only Originator Codes to be used by sources in Colorado:
WXR: To be used by National Weather Service Offices.
CIV: To be used by Emergency Government, Public Safety/911-Center, and all other Civil Authorities.
EAS: To be used by all Broadcasters and Cable TV Operators.

C. Colorado Event Codes

Whether used under the authority of the State EAS Plan, or any of the local area EAS plans, the following are the only event codes to be used in the State of Colorado by anyone for any purpose. No codes can be added without FCC approval. Local area EAS plans which desire to use a code not on this list, should submit that code request to the SECC for FCC approval and subsequent addition to this list. This list will be maintained as a “Master List” for all event codes used in the State of Colorado.

Approved FCC Event Codes

Emergency Action Notification
National Information Center
Required Monthly Test
Tornado Watch
Severe Thunderstorm Watch
Severe Weather Statement
Flash Flood Watch
Flash Flood Statement
Flood Warning
Winter Storm Watch
Blizzard Warning
High Wind Warning
Civil Emergency Message
Administrative Message
EAN
NIC
RMT
TOA
SVA
SVS
FFA
FFS
FLW
WSA
BZW
HWW
CEM
ADR
Emergency Action Termination
National Periodic Test
Required Weekly Test
Tornado Warning
Severe Thunderstorm Warning
Special Weather Statement
Flash Flood Warning
Flood Watch
Flood Statement
Winter Storm Warning
High Wind Watch
Evacuation Immediate
Practice/Demo Warning
Child Abduction Emergency
EAT
NPT
RWT
TOR
SVR
SPS
FFW
FLA
FLS
WSW
HWA
EVI
DMO
CAE

 Additional Colorado Event Codes(pending FCC approval)

Avalanche Warning
Closed Circuit Test
Earthquake Warning
Fire Warning
Fog Warning
Gas Leak Emergency
Icy Road Warning
Industrial Plant Emergency
Law Enforcement Emergency
Local Area Advisory
Local Area Emergency
Marine Warning
Military Emergency
AVW
CCT
EQW
FRW
FOW
GLE
IRW
IPE
LEE
LAA
LAE
MRW
MLE
Pueblo Chem.Dpt. Emergency
Rocky Flats Depot Test
Rocky Flats Emergency
Pueblo Chemical Depot Test
Radiological Emergency
Railroad Emergency
School Closing Emergency
Shelter in Place Advisory
State Advisory
Toxic Spill Emergency
Volcano Warning
Volcanic Ash Warning
911 Telephone Outage Warn
PCE
RFT
RFE
PCT
RDE
RRE
SCE
SIP
STA
TSE
VOW
VAW
TOE

Note: Future approval of additional event codes may require additional EPROM procurement. In addition, you must program your EAS unit to activate the codes too.D. Colorado County-Location Codes (PSSCCC)
The first digit (“P”) can be used to indicate one-ninth of the county code it precedes, in the following pattern:

0 = Entire County
1 = NW2 = NC3 = NE
4 = WC5 = C6 = EC
7 = SW8 = SC9 = SE

The remaining 5 digits (“SSCCC”) indicate the county, as listed on the next page. These are called the FIPS (Federal Information Processing) codes.

County
Adams
Alamosa
Arapahoe
Archuleta
Baca
Bent
Boulder
Chaffee
Cheyenne
Clear Creek
Conejos
Costilla
Crowley
Custer
Delta
Denver
Dolores
Douglas
Eagle
Elbert
El Paso
Code
08001
08003
08005
08007
08009
08011
08013
08015
08017
08019
08021
08023
08025
08027
08029
08031
08033
08035
08037
08039
08041
County
Fremont
Garfield
Gilpin
Grand
Gunnison
Hinsdale
Huerfano
Jackson
Jefferson
Kiowa
Kit Carson
Lake
La Plata
Larimer
Las Animas
Lincoln
Logan
Mesa
Mineral
Moffat
Montezuma
Code
08043
08045
08047
08049
08051
08053
08055
08057
08059
08061
08063
08065
08067
08069
08071
08073
08075
08077
08079
08081
08083
County
Montrose
Morgan
Otero
Ouray
Park
Phillips
Pitkin
Prowers
Pueblo
Rio Blanco
Rio Grande
Routt
Saguache
San Juan
San Miguel
Sedgwick
Summit
Teller
Washington
Weld
Yuma
Code
08085
08087
08089
08091
08093
08095
08097
08099
08101
08103
08105
08107
08109
08111
08113
08115
08117
08119
08121
08123
08125

E. Colorado L-Code Formats

This 8-character code is affixed to every EAS message originated or re-transmitted by every EAS encoder. The code identifies the particular broadcaster, cable operator, Weather Service office, Rocky Flats, Pueblo Chemical Depot site, or civil authority operating that encoder. “L-Code” ID=s must adhere to the following formats. No deviation from these formats is allowed, since using certain other characters would cause an error in the system.

Broadcasters:
Single Station:”KXXX(FM)”
Two or more stations: The call letters of one of the stations is sufficient. All other stations sending the alert should keep a log of alerts sent, as should the ID’d station. (Per FCC)

Cable TV:
(FCC issued cable ID for the headend numbers) Every cable system has a unique FCC issued ID number e.g., C0–0138. You should use the main headend ID for a specific geographic area.

Weather Service Offices:
Use the letters “KXXX/NWS” of the NOAA Weather Radio Station sending the alert. The XXX is the 3-letter designator of applicable NWS District.

Examples: “KDEN/NWS” Denver; “KGJT/NWS” Grand Junction

Civil Authorities:
This code uses three components in constructing its 8-character code:

Portion of L-Code Source of Characters
First four characters = First four letters of name of jurisdiction (Name of County, City, etc.)
Next two characters = Abbreviation for type of jurisdiction:
For County use “CO”
For City use “CY”
For Town use “TN”
For Village use “VL”
For Township use “TP”
For Municipality use “MY”
For State use “ST”
Last two characters = Abbreviation for type of agency:
For Sheriff use “SH”
For Fire Dept. use “FD”
For Police Dept. use “PD”
For State Patrol use “SP”
For Traffic Authority use “TA”
For Emergency Services use “ES”
For Emergency Government use “EG”
For Emergency Management use “EM”
Examples: Denver County Sheriff: “DENVCOSH”
City of Lakewood Police: “LAKECYPD”
Colorado State Patrol: “COLOSTSP”
Note: Military groups use: “U.S.ARMY”, “U.S.NAVY, “AIRFORCE”, “U.S.M.C.”, “U.S.C.G.”
Periods must be used for proper length L Code formats. 

Private Industry:
Pueblo Chemical Depot Site use “PUEBLOCD”
Rocky Flats Site use “ROCKFLAT”

V  EAS Tests

The following requirements regarding both RWT’s and RMT’s apply to all cable operators and all broadcasters, “PN”, as well as “NN” stations. Even stations that have elected not to participate in local EAS alerts, must still rebroadcast their local RMT every month. There are two exceptions to these rules. First, Class “D” FM and LPTV stations need not have an EAS encoder but must have an EAS decoder. These stations are exempt from running the weekly digital code RWT test, however, they must retransmit monthly RMT tests as outlined below, minus the EAS Header Codes and Attention Signal. In addition, LPTV stations must present all EAS information visually, just as all other TV stations must do. The second exception is for FM Translator and TV Translator stations, which are not required to have any EAS equipment.

A. Required Weekly Test (RWT)
1. Transmission
All broadcasters and cable operators must transmit an RWT once each week at random days and times except for the week of the RMT test. There are no time-of-day restrictions. This test consists of the EAS Header and End-of-Message Codes only.

2. Time-Duration and County-Location Codes to Use
*Time-Duration used in the EAS Header Code for all EAS Tests shall be in 15 minutes increments.
*County-Locations codes used in the EAS Header Code for EAS Tests shall conform to these guidelines:

LP Stations: All tests, RWT and RMT, shall include the location code for all counties in that LP station’s local area of responsibility. To determine the counties in their local area of responsibility, each LP station should consult the “Boundary Map of Colorado EAS Local Areas”, found in Appendix B of this plan.

For the RWT originated each week by each PN and NN station, and each cable operator, the county-location code used shall be the county for the broadcaster=s city of license, or cable operator=s community of license. Other counties in the station=s/system=s service area may be added at management’s discretion.

3. Reception
All broadcasters and cable operators receiving a RWT from one of their monitored sources must log receipt of this test. No further action is required.

4. Test Format
No script is required for the RWT.

1. Stop regular programming
2. one-second pause
3. Send EAS Header Codes
4. one-second pause
5. Send EAS EOM Codes
6. One-second pause
7. Resume normal programming (this is the so-called “silent” test)

B.  Monthly Tests
All EAS participants must send and receive at least one Required Monthly Test (RMT) each calendar month.
During the months of March, June, September, and December the RMT will be a coordinated statewide test.
During the other months of the year the RMT will be originated in your local EAS area.
Times and dates of the statewide tests will be issued to the LP-1 and LP-2 in your area before the beginning of the calendar year by the State of Colorado SECC.

C. Required Monthly Test (RMT)
1. Transmission
RMT’s are to be initiated by LP-1 and LP-2 stations. During some months, the test will actually be initiated by the Public Safety/911-Center, State, NWS, or Emergency Operation Center associated with these stations in this State Plan. During the designated week for this test, all other broadcasters and cable operators are to wait for this test and then act as described in (4) below. These tests shall always use the Event Code “RMT”, never codes such as “State Test”, or “Local Area Test”, etc.

2. Time-Duration and County-Location Codes to be Used
*Time-Duration used in the EAS Header Code for all EAS Tests shall be “30 minutes”.
*County-Locations codes in the EAS Header for EAS Tests shall conform to these guidelines:

LP Stations: All tests, RWT and RMT, shall include the location code for all counties in that LP station=s local area of responsibility. To determine the counties in their local area of responsibility, each LP station should consult the “Boundary Map of Colorado EAS Local Areas”, found in Appendix B of this plan.

PN and NN Stations and Cable Operators: RMT tests shall be re-transmitted unchanged, except for the “L-Code”. Thus, RMT’S will include all counties present in the original message.

3. Scheduling of RMT’s / Week and Time-of-Day
*RMT’s shall always occur during the a full, Sunday-thru-Saturday week of the month.

4. Scheduling of RMT’s / Recommended Time Constraints
LP stations, as well as Public Safety/911-Centers, NWS, and the State are requested to use judgement in the scheduling of times for RMT’s. Since all broadcasters and cable operators are required to rebroadcast this test within 15 minutes of receiving it, care should be taken not to put undue hardship on participants. Refraining from scheduling the RMT during prime time, news casts, and pay-per-view events. In addition, the times of major events are recommended to be avoided, such as: pre-planned Presidential speeches, hours of a major national or local news story carried outside of normal newscast hours, local and national election coverage, and major sporting events like World Series games and the Superbowl.

Broadcasters and cable operators which have a complaint regarding the scheduling of RMT’s in their area should make their concerns known to their local area chair (see “The Colorado SECC/LECC” section in this Plan for names). If a satisfactory resolution is not reached at that level, the State SECC chair should be contacted.

5. Reception / Re-transmission of RMT’s
All broadcasters and cable operators receiving an RMT must re-transmit this test within 15 minutes of receiving it. For daytime-only stations receiving a night-time RMT, this test must be re-transmitted if received within the 15 minute window. Daytime stations may send a RWT if the RMT received is outdated. A transmission of the RMT takes the place of the Required Weekly Test (RWT). Times should be logged for both the receipt and re-transmission of the RMT. Re-transmission of this test is not an option. It is an FCC violation to fail to re-transmit this test within 15 minutes of receiving it. It may be wise to program your EAS unit for a 15-minute automatic countdown upon receiving an RMT, then if the operator on duty does not send the test manually within that window, the unit will do it automatically when the countdown is over.

6. Script Format for Local EAS area RMT
The following format shall be used by all Colorado broadcasters, cable operators, and emergency agencies when originating EAS tests. Re-transmitting entities must re-transmit it within 15 minutes in the exact same format. The following format is required:

1. Stop regular programming
2. Intro (Optional):  If an EAS intro is used it should include the (Local Area) served and inform the listener that this is a test of the Colorado Emergency Alert System.”
3. One-second pause
4. Send EAS Headers [All sources must use Event Code “RMT” for this test.]
5. One-second pause
6. Send EAS Attention Signal (8 to 25 seconds) [the old EBS tones]
7. Read Test Script: “This is a test of the Colorado Emergency Alert system. In the event of an emergency, this system would bring you important information. This test is now concluded.”
8. One-second pause
9. Send EAS EOM Codes
10. One-second pause
11. Resume normal programming
Script Note: (Local Area) : Use the name of your local area found in this Plan (such as “METRO”, “SOUTH PLATTE”, etc.)

D. Quarterly Statewide EAS RMT Tests

The State of Colorado will initial four (4) statewide tests during a calendar year. The tests will occur in the months of March, June, September, and December. A schedule of the quarterly statewide tests will be published at the beginning of each calendar year. The originator of the statewide tests may vary on a yearly basis.

Script Format for Statewide EAS RMT
1. Stop regular programming
2. Intro (Optional):  (If an  intro is used it should indicate that this is a statewide test of the Colorado Emergency Alert System.”
3. One-second pause
4. Send EAS Headers [All sources must use Event Code “RMT” for this test.]
5. One-second pause
6. Send EAS Attention Signal (8 to 25 seconds) [the old EBS tones]
7. Read Test Script: “This is a statewide test of the Colorado Emergency Alert system. In the event of an emergency, this system would bring you important information. This statewide test is now concluded.”
8. One-second pause
9. Send EAS EOM Codes
10. One-second pause
11. Resume normal programming

VI EAS Real Alert Activation

A. Guidance for Alert Originators
A Word of Caution for all alert originators: Emergency services agencies have acquired a valuable new tool in gaining direct access to all area broadcasters and cable operators via the EAS. However, if not used prudently, you put yourself in danger of losing this tool. Broadcasters and cable operators are expecting the EAS to be used only for life-threatening emergencies. Keep in mind two things. (1) Some broadcasters and cable operators have their EAS decoders set on automatic mode. No personnel are monitoring your message and deciding if it should be aired, it goes out immediately upon reception. They are depending on you to only send an EAS alert for a life-threatening emergency. The first time the system is triggered for a frivolous event, confidence of the local area broadcasters and cable operators will be lost. (2) Broadcasters and cable operators participate in the local-level EAS on a voluntary basis. No one can force them to carry your EAS alerts. Maintain a good relationship with your local broadcasters and cable operators, and they will come through for you in a crisis.

1. National Weather Service Personnel
NWS personnel should issue EAS weather alerts via the weather teletype, and on NOAA weather radio using the NOAA-SAME/EAS Codes. NWS procedures should be followed relating to the transmission of the SAME/EAS codes, the 1050 Hz Alert Tone, and the reading of the weather bulletin script.

Considering that NOAA Weather Radio is being envisioned in the future as an “All-Hazards Radio” network, alerts for other than weather emergencies may soon be originated by NWS personnel. In the event that NWS personnel originate non-weather EAS alerts, procedures found in this plan (and its associated local area EAS plans) regarding those alerts should be followed.

2. Emergency Services Personnel
The EAS is designed so that agencies with an emergency message need transmit that message only once, and it will be received by all area broadcasters and cable operators simultaneously. The most accessible method to do this is via your Public Safety/911-Center two-way radio or telephone lines. In order to generate this EAS message for transmission to broadcasters and cable operators, a device called an EAS encoder is needed. This unit is fed into the Public Safety-911-Center two-way radio system, and it will be received by local broadcasters and cable operators. The EAS message will then will automatically trigger local area EAS decoders to deliver your message.

At the present time, most counties have not yet purchased their own EAS encoder. Counties without an EAS encoder can still utilize the EAS by routing their emergency alert requests through a local designated Public Safety/911-Center. It is anticipated that there will eventually be one Public Safety/911-Center in each EAS local area equipped with an EAS encoder for alerting area broadcasters and cable operators. Contact the local area chair for procedures regarding contacting the local area Public Safety/911-Center to originate alerts for your county. Once you get your own EAS encoder, you will be able to alert your area broadcasters and cable operators directly.

3. Pueblo Chemical Depot and Rocky Flat Personnel
The Pueblo Chemical Depot and Rocky Flats have been given the authority to issue an EAS alert. EAS Alert Warnings should only be issued for life-threatening emergencies. Issuing EAS alerts for less-serious conditions could compromise the confidence of your local broadcasters and cable operators, all of whom are carrying your alerts on a voluntary basis.

4. Amber Alert Program
In April 2002, Governor Bill Owens signed into law the Amber Alert Plan Program, House Bill 1083. This bill provides the definition of an abducted child and allows for local law enforcement agencies to utilize the Emergency Alert System in Colorado to broadcast specific information to the public so that citizens may assist in the search for the missing child. The bill mandates the Colorado Bureau of Investigation be the liaison between the local law enforcement agency and the EAS broadcasters. Only the Colorado Bureau of Investigations has the authority to issue and terminate an Amber Alert. As with all EAS alerts, the local broadcasters carry these alerts on a voluntary basis.

B. Scripts and Formats for Real Alerts
1. State Activation
The State or its designate shall transmit the following messages to all Colorado broadcasters and cable operators via the State Primary station (KOA).

Format is as follows:
1. Send Activation Script-Cut 1: “We interrupt this program because of a State of Colorado emergency. Important information will follow.”
2. One-second pause
3. Send EAS Header Codes [with Event Code: “STA” (State Advisory]
4. One-second pause
5. Send EAS Attention Signal (two tone signal, 8 seconds required.)
6. Send Governor’s Intro Script: “The State of Colorado Emergency Alert System has been activated due to a statewide emergency. Following is an announcement from the Governor of the State of Colorado.”
7. Governor gives live address normally not to exceed 1 to 1/1/2 minutes.
(Note: some EAS decoders may automatically reset and cut him off if it is longer.)

8. Following the Governors address, send Termination Script. “This concludes EAS programming. All broadcast stations and cable systems may now resume normal operations.”
9. One-second pause
10. Send EAS EOM Codes
11. One-second pause

2. Local Area Activation
Local areas which have developed a specific local area EAS plan will have their own activation format presented in their local area plan. The following is a suggested local area activation format for general use by local areas which have not developed a specific EAS plan. Note that the length of the audio message must not exceed two minutes and normally should not exceed one and one-half minutes.

1. Stop regular programming
2. Optional Intro: “We interrupt our programming to activate the (Local Area) Colorado Emergency Alert System. Important information will follow.”
3. One-second pause
4. Send EAS Header Codes (Use appropriate Event Code from list provided on page 11 of this Plan.)
5. One-second pause
6. Send EAS Attention Signal (8 to 25 seconds, 8 seconds preferred.)
7. Audio Message Announcement: AWe interrupt our regular programming to activate the (Local Area) Colorado Emergency Alert System. At the request of (Emergency Agency), all EAS stations in (Local Area) Colorado should broadcast the following (Type of Alert/Matches Event Code) Announcement. “This is the (Local Area) Colorado Emergency Alert System. Important information will follow.”
8. Broadcast emergency message.
9. Termination Announcement: “This is the (Local Area) Colorado Emergency Alert System.”
10. All (Local Area) Colorado EAS stations are requested to re-broadcast the preceding announcement, which was issued by (Emergency Agency). “We now resume normal programming.”
11. One-second pause
12. Send EOM Codes
13. One-second pause
14. Resume normal programming

VII Programming of EAS Decoders for Use in Colorado

This section is provided to aid users of the EAS, primarily broadcasters and cable operators, in programming the event codes, county-location codes, and modes of operation into their EAS decoder. This information can also be of value to emergency services personnel who are making use of the decoder section of their EAS equipment.

Each EAS alert that you want your decoder to respond to will require that: (1) The decoder be programmed to receive the specific event code (2) The specific county and (3) The required mode of operation for the decoder for the specific event code.

A. Modes of Operation
All EAS decoders must be capable of at least manual and automatic operation. Some manufacturers also offer a semi-automatic mode.

Manual Operation: The decoder will only notify you of incoming EAS alerts that you have programmed it to respond to. The operator must push a button to re-transmit the alert on their station/cable system.

Automatic Operation: This type of operation would normally be used with a program interrupt connection on the EAS equipment. Your on-air audio and/or video is “looped through” the EAS equipment so that it interrupts the audio/video when necessary. In automatic operation, when the EAS decoder receives an EAS alert that it has been programmed to receive, it immediately interrupts the programming and transmits the EAS alert.

Semi-Automatic Operation: Under this mode of operation, when the EAS decoder receives an EAS alert it will begin a preset countdown to automatic interrupt. This allows the operator to transmit the EAS alert manually at the earliest convenience. If the alert is not transmitted by end of the countdown, the equipment will do it automatically. The same applies to an automatic mode of operation. The automatic mode of operation should insert the received alert in the next commercial break. If it fails to do that, the EAS equipment will interrupt and transmit the alert at the end of the count down.

You can program your EAS equipment to respond to different alerts in different modes, such as responding to all weather watches in manual mode, and all weather warnings in automatic mode. The RMT must be re-transmitted within 15 minutes of receipt, could be programmed for Semi-Automatic Mode with a 15-minute countdown. This would give operators the opportunity to transmit the RMT during a break in programming.

Broadcasters and cable casters using Unattended Operation must run their EAS equipment in Automatic Mode.

B. County Location Codes
Certain events for your county of license must be programmed into your EAS equipment. A list of those events follows. When programming your EAS equipment for other optional EAS alerts, include other counties in your “service area” that you wish to provide emergency notifications. Each type of alert can include various counties. Your EAS equipment can be programmed to notify you in the manual mode of any EAS alert received for your county of license. You can program separately the events you want the EAS equipment to respond when in the automatic mode.

C. Required Event Codes
The FCC requires that broadcasters and cable operators program their EAS decoders for the following events:

EAN (National EAS Activation) = Must be re-transmitted immediately.
EAT (National EAS Termination) = Must be re-transmitted immediately.
RMT (Required Monthly Test) containing your county of license code = Must be re-transmitted within 15 minutes of receipt.
RWT (Required Weekly Test) containing your county of license code = This received test need only be logged. No re-broadcast.
D. Suggested Programming Sequence for Setting Up Your EAS decoder

The following is an example of the list of events that you might enter into your EAS decoder:

EventDescriptionCounty codeOperation mode
EANNational EAS ActivationNot ApplicableAutomatic
EATNational EAS TerminationNot ApplicableAutomatic
NICNational Info. CenterNot ApplicableManual
RMTRequired Monthly TestYour County of licenseSemi-automatic/15-min.
RWTRequired Weekly TestYour County of licenseManual (for logging)
TORTornado WarningAll counties in your areaSemi-Automatic / 5 Min.
FFWFlash Flood WarningAll counties in your areaSemi-Automatic / 5 Min.
CEMCivil Emergency MessageAll counties in your areaSemi-Automatic / 5 Min.
EVILocal Area EmergencyAll counties in your areaAutomatic
—–“Any Received Alert”All counties in your areaManual

* If applicable in your Area.
Again, the above is a suggested list of what you might enter into your EAS decoder.
You may wish to enter additional codes for automatic or semi-automatic handling as outlined in your local area plan.

Appendix Links

Appendix A: Table of broadcast monitoring assignments of the 13 local areas
Appendix B: Boundary map of Colorado’s thirteen  Local Areas (1 page)
Appendix C: NOAA Weather Radio Stations and Coverage (2 pages)
Appendix D: The Colorado State Emergency Communications Committee (SECC)
Appendix E: Authorizing Signatures
Appendix F: Glossary of Terms and  Acronyms (6 pages)
Appendix G: Yearly RMT Schedules (PDF)
Appendix H: List of cable systems with their two required monitoring sources (PDF)